by BERNAMA / pic by TMR FILE PIX
AirAsia Group Bhd’s net loss widened to RM851.78 million in the third quarter ended Sept 30, 2020 (Q3 2020) from RM51.44 million recorded in the same quarter last year.
Revenue plunged 86% to RM442.91 million during the quarter under review from RM3.07 billion previously, as the COVID-19 pandemic continued to adversely affect demand for flights, said the low-cost airline group in a filing with Bursa Malaysia today.
The group said it would continue to conduct cost containment measures, including the right sizing of manpower and salary cuts for management, staff and directors.
Efforts to preserve cash, include negotiations for restructuring of payments with lessors, suppliers and partners, as well as the restructuring of fuel hedging positions were also undertaken, while actively managing capacity to be in line with demand, it said.
In a separate statement, AirAsia Group president (Airlines) Bo Lingam said the group managed to reduce fixed costs by 50% in Q3 2020, with fixed maintenance costs showing the deepest reduction of 68% due to asset optimisation.
He said staff costs declined by 51% contributed by headcount rationalisation, salary cuts across the board and attrition, while other operating expenditure decreased 40% year-on-year with strict cost control on marketing, rental and information technology spending.
“Our top priority at this point is to gradually increase our operations in phases, starting with strengthening our domestic foothold across our key markets as the borders remain closed.
“For the fourth quarter, we expect to operate up to 31% of pre-COVID domestic capacity for AirAsia Malaysia, 47% for AirAsia Indonesia and 13% for AirAsia Philippines,” he said.
Lingam expects AirAsia Thailand to exceed its pre-COVID domestic capacity by year-end while AirAsia India to operate up to 67%.
He added that the group was exploring opportunities for a local airline presence in Indo-China.